Mailee was a happy girl. 6 years old, golden brown wavy hair. Sparkling blue eyes that could bring a smile to any face. You’d think she was on top of the world. She told you one night in a starry field that she didn’t understand why we’re all so selfish and you laid back and sighed and she always wondered why, you couldn’t bring yourself to answer.
Jeyra never knew love, her parents told her she was worthless, slime dirt and scum. They beat it into her whenever she came home. She wandered and wandered until she came across a sweet starry field where she became lost. She couldn’t shed a tear because crying was weak, she stood up fast and moved on to the street.
Mailee lay in bed that night, but her world wasn’t as perfect as it seemed. Every night she left her window up but her family never knew, every night she was visited, every night she held her best friend who wouldn’t cry.
One cold night in the starry field Jerya noticed the lake. Tapping Mailee on the forehead the sneaked away from your sleepy eyes and put their feet in the edge of the lapping shore. They should’ve known, but you never told them that the beginning always leads to the end, for by the time you were snoring they had been submerged.
Rising out of the water with the sun the girls were long dry before you saw them, Jerya had retreated back to her street and Mailee was at your side. You woke up half past eight with your sweet little angel still asleep, so you carried her limp form and tucked it into bed.
Mailee didn’t wake up till long past lunch, but no one saw because you work on the weekend. Jerya didn’t make it to the starry field that night but she managed to slip in Mailee’s first story window before midnight. Jerya’s whisper would not have been heard had they not been in each others arms. “Are we dying?” Mailee just held her tighter and sobbed, but Jerya wouldn’t cry. Instead she just struggled to breathe.
The next morning Jerya almost got caught, barely slipping under the bed as the door handle turn she held back a raspy cough until you left. You just asked why she wasn’t ready for school, Mailee knew not anything else to do so she smiled until you left. Wheezing hard she slipped out of bed with a smile, and the two girls coughed together until they could stand. Both managing a smile they went their separate ways.
A month later the coughing was so that Mailee couldn’t leave her bed. Jerya couldn’t come out from under it except at night for her cough was slightly less than Mailee’s.
The next week, they both would have died had I not been informed of Mailee’s late night coughing by a neighbor, and I noticed that there was still coughing when her mouth was closed. Both girls’ lives were saved but barely, another week and they’d have died and you would have never known why.
Now Jerya and Mailee are grown women, married and more successful than you ever were. Jerya holds a retreat from her church in that same field once a month no matter the weather, Mailee always attends. Mailee pastors the church they started after recovery, but it’s a different kind of church. On Monday nights they gather in the church and bring up one member of the congregation who shares of a time when they were hurt or felt alone, and they pray about and work out how to keep themselves from doing the same to someone else. A worship service in that church is like nothing you’ve ever seen.
Would you like to see it? Just open your eyes. They’re dying alone, quietly. Suicides, self harm, simply forced sickness, and lonliness. Step up and speak out. Don’t be afraid to say hi, you could be a life saver. The story I tell you isn’t real, but the message behind it is.
Live long and prosper, Tori Lynn.